Sunday, September 23, 2012

I Just Heard A Story.....

The Unchained Tour big blue bus pulled into downtown Charleston a few nights ago. I had my ticket to ride.

Four "story tellers" were on board for short hops from Savannah to cities around North and South Carolina for about 10 days..

This is the third time the bus has hit the road on its mission to talk to the people and support independent bookstores.

This stop at the Charleston Music Hall was sponsored by Blue Bicycle Books, around the corner on King Street.

George Dawes Green from Savannah, the founder of and the man behind the oral tradition tour,  welcomed the full house and promised an entertaining evening of music and stories. He delivered.

Peter Aguero was wearing jeans, sneakers and a distinctive mustache.

He was the emcee and introduced each tale teller.

Peter also told his story of his spectacular success with women - well, one in particular - when he was in college.

The college, he later decided , was a good one to drop out from.

He said he was small as a youth and then got much larger as he grew up.

A lot larger.

Rachel Kate Gillon and Joel T. Hamilton, a local duet, provided musical interludes throughout the evening.

The format was simple: several stories were told, music and an intermission and then two more story tellers in the second half.

A nice audience participation surprise asked us to put our name on a slip of paper during the break and three would be selected at random to present a one-minute story.

I filled out an entry but it was not drawn. Pity, I had a great story ready to dazzle in the true spirit of the evening.

Dawn J. Fraser, is from Trinidad by way of Brooklyn

She told a charming story of feeling left out and ignored.

That was not exactly the charming part. 

After several confrontations, the story ended with her feeling at home and at peace within herself.

Dawn's tale involved a dog named Marley. And dreadlocks. And her extended family of Trinidadians.
Edgar Oliver is the small gentleman with the booming, theatrical diction and delivery!

Even though Peter had alerted us, we still were surprised by the lilting musical tone of Edgar's voice as he shared a twisting tale of mistaken identity and a bogus sense of imminent danger.

His story recalled an adventurous evening walk in New York City. And no, it was NOT a dark and stormy night.

It involved the headwaters of Avenue C, a potential missing person named Aaron, shady characters possibly lurking in the shadows and was delivered in a delightful, enticing manner.

We were hanging on every word.

I have a copy of AMERICAN GODS so was somewhat familiar with the writings of Neil Gaiman, our final presenter of the evening.

He has an insightful piece about his joining the blue bus magical tour and I invite you to click on the link.

His delivery was smooth, with an English accent, and covered an event in his childhood in an abandoned stately manor where he learned a few steamy jokes from older kids.

He used the new material to regale unsuspecting friends and eventually involved his school master, the owner of the school and his shocked mother.

Hint: always know your audience.

The moral of the story he said was learning the awesome power of words.

Blue Bicycle was site for the after-party.
The "Bus Named Wanda" drew attention.

(Click on the photos for more details.)

This is the first time I have tried
to group several photos together.

During the intermission, smokers smoked.
It was OK to go online but still buy books.
At the end, the cast took bows..and a video.

Hopeful 1-minute story tellers names.

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